Sunday, 9 December 2018

Christmas Ornament Exchange

At this festive time of year Needlecraft Haven has it's biggest exchange. It's pure pleasure to be the host of such a warm forum, small in number but huge in friendship.

Christine organised our Christmas Exchange and linked everyone to a partner for whom we had to stitch a festive ornament.

Our Opening Day was 1st December and as this was a secret exchange we didn't sign our cards. It's always down to Postie when sending our exchanges, especially overseas, and this time one parcel took an extra week to reach it's destination.  We opened our parcels last Saturday but we only found out who had sent them on the 7th once the final parcel had safely arrived.

My parcel ready to send to my partner
The Chtistmasy parcel I received
My parcel was from Angi who has not been stitching much lately due to her health. It was so lovely to receive a piece of her work and to know she had picked up a needle again. I love my Snowman and he'll be hung on our tree when we put it up later in the month. As well as a card Angi also included a bar of Christmas chocolate - yummy, thanks Angi.

My super exchange from Angi
I love my Snowman
My partner was Justine. I decided to stitch a stocking design that is in my Donna Kooler book.  I stitched it on perforated paper and included some miniature snowmen and santas for Justine's two boys (I forgot to take a photo of them, oops)
The stocking I stitched for Justine
Every bit of this exchange has been great fun:

  • finding out who I was stitching for
  • choosing the chart, fabric and threads
  • stitching
  • sending the parcel with a card and extra treats
  • receiving my parcel
  • waiting for Opening Day
  • opening my parcel and discovering the beautiful stitching
  • finding out who had sent to me
  • seeing and hoping my partner liked her gift
  • discovering who had sent to who
  • sharing photos to see everyone's beautiful work

Exchanges are far more than just stitching and sending an ornament, I love all the exchanges we do at Needlecraft Haven throughout the year - thank you Christine for organising another great Christams Exchange.

Saturday, 1 December 2018

Advent Blog Hop

The lovely Jo at Serendipitous Stitching  has organised an Advent Blog Hop to lead us all up to Christmas - thanks Jo

Everyday a different blogger will be posting up a Christmas photo of something stitched or crafted for Christmas; Jo will be sharing the links to each Advent on her blog so don't forget to pop by. I feel privileged and honoured to start our Advent Blog Hop.

My photo for the Advent is of a piece of stitching I did many years ago and is a big part of our Christmas. I used aida band fabric and variegated thread to stitch this cake band, baking it with baking paper. I'm not sure when I bought the snowmen candles; they have never been lit and are put safely away each year until the next Christmas.

 It would not be Christmas without our Snowmen cake!

Snowmen dancing around our Christmas Cake 
The theme of this year's Advent Blog Hop is 'My Favourite Christmas Song' - mine favourite is O Little Town of Bethlehem. Although a beautiful traditional carol my favourite version is sung by Cliff Richard. It really gives me a warm feeling, perfect for the Christmas season.


Wishing everyone joy, peace and love as we travel through Advent



🎄 Merry Christmas 🎄

Thursday, 15 November 2018

Gifted Gorgeousness November

Gifted Gorgeousness is hosted by the lovely Jo at Serendipitous Stitching on the 15th of every month. It's a great way to share details of gifts you have sent or gifts you have received.

This month I have only one piece to share as my other stitching has been for Needlecraft Haven's Christmas Exchange, always fun to be part of as it's the exchange neatly everyone joins.

My gift this month was for a friend who turned 50 a few days ago. She loves Minions so this was perfect and appreciated.


It's been a mixed month for me so far. November is when all the wine events are on ready for the festive season. Hubby and I visited Love Wine in Birmingham last week which was great fun. You can read about it over on Aimetu's - wine, food and travel. This coming weekend we're in London for Waitrose Wine Fair, another fun event.

Unfortunately my Dad's cousin is in hospital, she's a great lady in her 80s who is just getting old. As soon as home care is in place she can be discharged. I have been to see her in hospital but I'm finding bit very hard as she is on the ward where my Dad passed away.

We had more sad news this week, Hubby's aunt has passed away. We'll be travelling to Bristol next week for her funeral. She was a lovely lady who always sent him a birthday card, even in recent years as he health deteriated.

I have been pushing the GP to find why my ankle constantly hurts. I know it was quite an injury with three breaks and the dislocation but it was over 18 months ago. Everyone has been saying it takes time but pain all the time, worsening when walking, is really getting me down.

Last Sunday I saw an orthopaedic consultant at the hospital. A new x-ray was taken and revealed the pin heads on both sides of my ankle are protruding slightly which could be irritating my tendon causing the pain and restriction. It was a good feeling for someone medical to finally see and say that there was something out of place and I wasn't just being a moaning patient.

So another operation, probably in the New Year, to remove all the metal work as my bones have healed completely. Not such traumatic surgery this time with a much quicker recovery time. I'm not looking forward to the op but by summer I hope to be walking better, further and be back in sandals and shoes.


All in all a very mixed month, apologies for all the text. Thank you for calling by, it means a lot and certainly helps x x

Tuesday, 6 November 2018

Belated Halloween Exchange

Needlecraft Haven's Halloween Exchange was great fun with gorgeous ornaments stitched by all. My partner to send to was Christine and when I saw the black cat by Durene Jones in Just Cross Stitch Halloween magazine 2018 I knew it was perfect.

For my birthday in September Christine had kindly given me some Pumpkin Patch hand dyed fabric from Sparklies - perfect for her cat!

I struggled to find a Halloween card but our visit to a National Trust property on our way home from holiday had the perfect one.

Lacock card and Spooky Cat ornament 
Unfortunately my exchange parcel did not arrive in time for Halloween and as we have been away for the weekend I didn't receive it until yesterday. Dusty stitched me a lovely ornament with button eyes and a spider charm. She also sent a great card, Halloween kitchen towel and a butterfly threader - thank you Dusty.
Halloween ornament from Dusty
My Halloween Exchange parcel
 I have a few more gifts to stitch for this month and next and Needlecraft Haven's Christmas Ornament Exchange to do so I will only be able to share these photos as the relevant dates occur. I will however soon be posting about my tree at church - this year I have not stitched ornaments but they are still crafty .... all will be revealed soon!

Wednesday, 31 October 2018

Halloween Trick or Treat Blog Hop

Spooky time 👻👻👻

Jo from Serendipitous Stitching  has organised another fun hop around our blogs to see our Spooky stitching, find some Spooky letters and jump to the next Spooky blog 😱

Once you have discovered the Spooky Phrase hop over to Jo's blog and leave it in a comment for a chance to win a prize 😈

My Halloween stitching is all from a few years ago as I haven't done much lately, although this year I have for Needlecraft Haven Halloween Exchange. I can share the photos for that tomorrow after I know my partner has opened hers and hopefully mine arrives as it's not here yet :-)

2013 Exchange
2008 Exchange
Stitched for Michael
Stitched for Philippa

They are all stitched on perforated card, I quite like using it as it for ornaments when stitching characters. I backed both designs with felt, the tricky bit is always the cutting around. 

Here's my Spooky letter for Halloween Trick or Treat Blog Hop

Now you have my letter it's time to spread your bat wings or witches cape and fly over to 



As you know I love to change my mantle and sideboard for various times of year, Halloween is no exception although now our children are grown ups my decorations are mainly my candle holders and ornaments on a more autumn theme than being spooky. I have a few mini pumpkins this year too which I'll be baking soon.



Happy Halloween to you all -I hope you have fun with plenty of treats.

Sunday, 21 October 2018

Coffee Koozie's holiday snaps

A very quick post to share Coffee Koozie's holiday snaps - very successful although it was quite a surprise at how the cups vary in diameter.

McDonald's pitstop on our journey
Day out with the National Trust
Besides the seaside, besides the sea
Coffee Koozie now lives in my handbag and will be with me on all my travels, so more holiday snaps soon!

Monday, 15 October 2018

Gifted Gorgeousness October

Gifted Gorgeousness is hosted by the lovely Jo at Serendipitous Stitching on the 15th of every month. It's a great way to share details of gifts you have sent or gifts you have received.

This is a short post from me as we are on holiday on the south coast of England- a last minute decision as the river cruise we should be on was cancelled due to low water levels. We've decided on a quiet week just enjoying reading, sewing, wandering around. We are doing the river cruise in December now with the added bonus of seeing the Christmas markets.

My GG this month is the wedding sampler I made for our friends' youngest daughter. They look gorgeous together, we had a lovely time at their reception.

Wedding Sampler
The happy couple 
As always my current stitching is gifts or exchanges so there will not be much stitching to share this month .... but Koozie is here on holiday too so look out for his adventures next blog 😉